What is Intimate Partner Sexual Abuse?
CAVEAT: The research and cases cited throughout this course contain graphic descriptions of sexual and physical violence. Some of this material is extremely disturbing.
Intimate partner sexual abuse encompasses a wide range of coerced sexual activity, far beyond marital rape alone. Victims may be coerced into sexual activity or denied control over their reproductive health through verbal coercion, threats against the victim or others, financial manipulation or physical violence.
This module presents the many mechanisms of coercion, ranging from economic and other types of extortion to sexual torture, with representative cases.
These cases sometimes involve conduct so extreme that it is difficult to believe that the facts alleged could possibly be true. It is important to be aware of all the manifestations of intimate partner sexual abuse in order to understand just how extreme this abuse can be and to see this type of abuse as an aspect of domestic violence and a factor for risk assessment.